Was Tim Burton going to replace Johnny Depp with Tom Hanks in Edward Scissorhands? Depp certainly thought so at the time. An interview with the actor from 1999 has recently resurfaced and Depp says that he was confident that he was going to be fired from the holiday classic. Obviously, Edward Scissorhands wouldn't be the beloved twisted classic it currently is without Depp's quiet and fragile performance, much like Beetlejuice wouldn't be as great as it is without Michael Keaton. But for a while, Depp was positive that he was going to be replaced.
In an interview with Charlie Rose, Johnny Depp spoke about his insecurities while working with Tim Burton for the first time, and onwards. While working on Edward Scissorhands, Depp revealed that Burton would rehearse with the whole cast, except for him. The actor goes on to say that nobody was really sure what he was going to do. Depp explains.
"He didn't know exactly what I was going to do when I walked on the set, the same thing with Ed Wood. In fact, I spent the first two weeks of Ed Wood and Scissorhands and Sleepy Hallow thinking I was going to be fired, that I was going to be replaced. But luckily Tim was happy with the stuff, and I didn't lose my job."
During the interview, Charlie Rose can't believe what he's hearing. But Johnny Depp insists that it's true, or at least that's how he felt at the time. Looking at the interview, which is now nearly 20-years old, it's interesting to see how the actor was at that particular time in his career. He went on to tell the Tom Hanks portion of his story. Depp had this to say.
"I can remember when we were doing Scissorhands we were living in this sort of resort, some kind of country club thing, and there was a knock on the door... one afternoon while everyone was off rehearsing. There were two young girls at the door and I thought, Oh, they found me and maybe they want me to sign something, I don't know. So, I opened the door and said, How do you do? and they said, Hi. Is Tom Hanks here? Does he live here? I said, What? No. Not yet. And I was convinced that Hanks would be replacing me. I was convinced. It was one of the most frightening moments in my career."
Tom Hanks in Edward Scissorhands just doesn't make a whole lot of sense, even in 1990. Hanks is an excellent actor, but that would have just been way too weird, even for Tim Burton. In the end, Johnny Depp and the iconic director have worked together many times over the years, making one think about whether or not Depp still has those insecurities while working with Burton.
Lately, Johnny Depp has gotten into some weirder ideas, like wanting to do a shot-for-shot remake of Titanic in his bathtub, or get into fights on the sets of his movies. But, this old interview is a really interesting time capsule, especially when compared to Depp interviews today. You can watch the 1990 interview with Depp below, thanks to The Hollywood Reporter. As a bonus feature, the Charlie Rose interview with Jon Bon Jovi plays right after.